Fascinating fantasy adventure
An early and little known fantasy adventure, Castle of the Winds 2 is actually a charming discovery that makes for an entertaining excursion. The game features a surprisingly compelling story that is heavily inspired by Norse mythology and the likes of Dungeons and Dragons, and which is told simply but effectively through scripted story sequences. It follows on directly from the prequel, Castle of the Winds, so interested parties would be well advised to check that out first, and sees the player character continuing his epic quest to become crowned as king of the titular castle. Gameplay is tile-based and sees players exploring a series of randomly generated dungeons, engaging in combat, using magic, engaging with NPCs and other assorted RPG-style staples. While combat and magic are fairly simple, they are quite absorbing and the game really does manage to draw the player into its world with surprising ease. The graphics are of course very basic, but still manage to be somehow endearing, and help to create a believable environment that is fun to explore. Although it lacks the depth of modern RPGs, Castle of the Winds is a fascinating excursion in the early days of the genre and as such should be played by historians and fans of The Bard's Tale or Ultima alike.